The Tribe of Dan are the Danes (Denmark) and the Irish

by Peter Salemi

The Patriarch Dan was born from the handmaid of Rachel, Bilhah. Rachel was in envy of her sister Leah. She wanted so badly to bear a child for Jacob, that she gave him her handmaid to bear a son. That son was Dan. When he was born she said, "God hath judged me, and hath also heard my voice, and hath given me a son: therefore called she his name Dan." (Gen 30:6). This is the meaning of the word "Dan." (Strong's #1777 "judge").

In Jacob's prophecy for the "latter days" (Gen 49:1), Dan was prophesied to "judge his people, as one of the tribes of Israel" (v.16). Here is an interesting characteristic of Dan. The Pulpit Commentary says, "With a play upon his name, the firstborn son of Rachel"s handmaid, Bilhah, is described as one who should occupy an important place and exercise highly beneficial functions in the future commonwealth, enjoying independence and self-government as one of the tribes of Israel (Herder, and others), and performing the office of an administrator among the People not of his own tribe merely, but also of all Israel" (emphasis added). Dan was to be a judge in the other tribes of Israel, yet still be his own separate nation.

Jacob continues, "Dan shall be a serpent by the way, an adder in the path, that biteth the horse heels, so that his rider shall fall backward." (v.17).  The meaning of this prophecy is that he would leave a trail wherever he would go. The evidence of this is clear. Dan's migrations as revealed in the Bible, shows them naming everything after their father "Dan," see Joshua 19:47; Judges 18:12, 27-29.

Dan had but one son Hushim (Gen 46:26), "These are the sons of Dan after their families: of Shuham, the family of the Shuhamites. These are the families of Dan after their families.

"All the families of the Shuhamites, according to those that were numbered of them, were threescore and four thousand and four hundred." (Num 26:43). However, "though this family no doubt branched out into several smaller families, which are not named here, simply because this list contains only the leading families into which the tribes were divided." (K&D Commentary). We see evidence of this in the Bible, like "Aholiab, the son of Ahisamach," (Ex 31:6; 35:34; 38:23). "Shelomith, the daughter of Dibri, of the tribe of Dan:" (Lev 24:11). "Ahiezer the son of Ammishaddai" (Num 1:12; 2:25; 7:66; 10:25). "Ammiel the son of Gemalli." (Num 13:12). "Bukki the son of Jogli." (Num 34:22), and "Azareel the son of Jeroham" (1 Chron 27:22). These were the smaller families of Dan via Shuham/Hushim. So the sub-tribes of Dan are, Shuham, Ahisamach, Dibri, Ammishaddai, Gemalli, Jogli, Jeroham.

The Promised Land

When the 12 tribes of Israel actually took possession of the promised land, the tribe of Dan was allotted its tribal inheritance in the South Western area of that land.. Dan was situated west-Northwest of Judah; Dan's territory extended westward to the Mediterranean Sea, and included the busy port of Joppa, next to modern Tel-Aviv (Joshua 19:40-48).

Now the Danites migrated Northwards to Laish, and called the city Dan, after their father, see Judges 18. The northern city Laish, now called Dan, by the tribe of Dan, was about thirty miles inland from the ancient busy port of Tyre. Thus the ancient Danites must of had frequent contacts with the people of Tyre, which was in fact occupied by their brethren the tribe of Asher, see Joshua 19:29. So since their Israelite brothers occupied the land of Tyre, they had access to Tyre at anytime. In 2 Chronicles 2:14 we see Danites dwelling the city of Tyre. These people of Tyre were a people of sea trade and navigation, see Ezekiel 27. These people built Tyre and Sidon on the Lebanese coast.

In the 1200's B.C., before Dan went to Laish, in a song commemorating a great Israelite victory, the Judge Deborah lamented that during the battle, the "men of Gilead stayed beyond the Jordan [River], and [asked] why DAN REMAINED IN SHIPS?" (Judges 5:17). The Danites were so preoccupied with the Sea and sea trade that they chose to remain in their ships than help their brethren. So even before the time they went to Laish, the Danites were already engaged in sea-faring activities off of Joppa. Where were these Danites sailing to?

In Egypt, many of the Israelites, the Royal Line of Zarah-Judah, Calchol, and Darda left Egypt and sailed into Greece. (1 Chronicles 2:6). (Read our booklet The Throne of David for more details). The Danites knew that these Israelites were dwelling in Greece, and therefore there is ample evidence that the Danites headed towards Greece as well.  The historian C.W. Muller noted that, “Hecataeus [of Abdera, Greek historian, 4th century B.C.]... tells us that the Egyptians, formerly being troubled by calamities [the Ten Plagues at the time of the Exodus] in order that the divine wrath might be averted, expelled all the [Israelite] aliens gathered together in Egypt. Of these, some, under their leaders Danuss and Cadmus, migrated into Greece; others into other regions, the greater part into Syria [Canaan]. Their leader is said to have been Moses, a man renowned for wisdom and courage, founder and legislator of the state” (Fragmenta Historicorum Graecorum, vol. 2, p. 385).

A book entitled Hellenosemitica (1965) goes to great lengths to show that the Greek “Hellenes” and the Israelite “Semites” were closely related. This book mentions two branches of the Danites (“Danunians” and “Danaans”), and shows that these people once occupied the island of Cyprus. It also mentions the Cyprian “tradition of the Danaan migration from the eastern Mediterranean” (pp. 14, 79). That was the very same area which was assigned to the tribe of Dan when Joshua led the 12 tribes of Israel into the Promised Land!

Professor Allen H. Jones (Bronze Age Civilization—The Philistines and the Danites). He traces the Danaans, a name that the famed Greek poet Homer often used for all Greeks, back to the Israelite tribe of Dan (“Danaans and Danites—Were the Hebrews Greek?,” Biblical Archaeology Review, June 1976).

In Ezekiel 27, we see Dan with Javan (Greece) having trade with Tyre, "Dan also and Javan going to and fro occupied in thy fairs: bright iron, cassia, and calamus, were in thy market. (v19). It is common knowledge among biblical historians that “Javan was regarded as the representative of the Greek race” (Smith’s Bible Dictionary).

The Mighty Hercules

The legend of Hercules has been told from ancient times till our day today. Many have not made the connection between Hercules and Samson. Yet the similarities between the two are obvious. Samson was a Judge in Israel, and was of the tribe of Dan! The Danites when travelling to Greece and having still commerce and trade with Tyre, who were of the tribe of Asher, still communicating with the Danites of the Promised Land knew and heard about Samson, their Judge and all his exploits. Coming back to Greece, the stories of Samson were told.  Interestingly enough, the "Encyclopedia of the Classical World," states, " The tales of his heroic deeds lend to the supposition that Hercules was originally an historic figure."  Of course that is Samson.

Both Hercules and Samson were incredibly strong, both killed a lion with their bare hands. Both were virtually invincible. One important event in Hercules' life involved his escaping from the clutches of a symbolic woman, who is called "Pleasure." This corresponds directly to the troubles Samson got himself involved in with the harlots of Canaan.

In the book, "God's Heroes and Men of Ancient Greece " by W.H.D. Rouse writes about Hercules slaying of the lion: "Heracles threw down his bow and arrows and leapt upon the lion's back... while he put his hands round the lion's neck ...gripped the lion's throat with his two hands, and bending him backwards, throttled him. There lay the lion dead on the ground." (p. 59). In our Bible, Judges 13:6 says that Samson actually tore the lion in two, but the ancient historian Flavius Josephus in his "Antiquities of the Jews" also tells us that Samson first strangled the lion, which is exactly as Hercules is said to have done. I don't even know if there ever were any lions in Greece. The Biblical Archaeologist Magazine somewhat tersely comments, "lions, we may remark are not frequent in Greece." (59:1, p.17). In fact, the Greek myths explain this one away as the offspring of a monster! But whether there were lions in Greece is not important; Hercules needed to find one anyway. Why? Simply because the Biblical Samson inspired the Greek legend called Hercules, and provided the basis for his life!

Why is he called "Hercules"? The word Hercules in Greek is, "Heracles," which is virtually identical with the Hebrew plural word for traders, "Heraclim," and Heracles is said to have come from "Argos," himself! The Greek myths tell that the people of Argos are from the Danioi were descended from a patriarch "Danaos" who was the son of "Bela." In the Bible, the Hebrew patriarch Dan was the son of the concubine "Bilhah" (Genesis 30:3-6).

Testimony of Josephus, the Jewish Historian

Jewish Historian Josephus shows that the Lacedemonian (Spartans of Greece) were actually Israelites, and therefore closely related to the Jews. Josephus relates an incredible letter from Sparta to Judah: "Jonathan the high priest of the Jewish nation . . . to the ephori and senate and the people of the Lacedemonians, send greeting:

"When in former times an epistle was brought to Onias, who was then our high priest . . . we have discovered that both the Jews and the Lacedemonians are of ONE STOCK, and are derived from the KINDRED OF ABRAHAM...concerning the KINDRED THAT WAS BETWEEN US AND YOU, a copy of which is here subjoined, we both joyfully received the epistle . . . because we were well satisfied about it from the SACRED WRITINGS, yet did not we think fit, first to begin the claim of this RELATION TO YOU, the glory which is now given us by you. It is a long time since this relation of ours to you hath been renewed, and when we, upon holy and festival days offer sacrifices to God, we pray to Him for your preservation and victory . . . . You will, therefore, do well yourselves to write to us, and send us an account of what you stand in need of from us, since we are in all things disposed to act according to your desires...This letter is foursquare: and the seal is an eagle, with a dragon [snake or serpent] in its claws" (Antiquities of the Jews, bk 12 chapter 4 sec 10; XIII, 5, 8, emphasis added).

The Lacedemonians received the Jewish ambassadors carrying the letter kindly and made a decree of friendship and mutual assistance with the Jews, and then sent the letter to their Lacedemonian kinsmen.

Another Jewish High Priest, Jonathan—somewhat later than Onias—wrote the Spartans “concerning the kindred that was between US and YOU... because we were well satisfied about it from the sacred writings.... It is a long time since this relation of ours to you hath been renewed, and when we, upon holy and festival days, offer sacrifices to God, we pray to Him for your preservation and victory” (Josephus, bk. 13, chap. 5, sec. 1, p. 318).

In Ancient Mythology, Bryant relates that Stephanus Byzantium shows that Alexander Polyhistor and Claudius Jolaus also speak of a direct relationship or kinship between the Spartan Greeks and the people of Judaea (vol.5, p.51-52, 60).

The Spartans we have identified as the tribe of Simeon who were prophesied to be scattered all over Israel. Living under the realm of the Grecian Danites, their tribal standard would of been secondary to the main tribal standard of Greece which is Dan's tribal standard.

The Tribal Flag of Dan

The Seal Josephus mentions is revealing because the tribal emblem or ensign, see Numbers 2:2 of the people of Dan included the image of a "snake," see article "Flag," The Jewish Encyclopedia, p.405. This symbolism is derived from what Jacob had foretold: "Dan shall be a serpent by the way, an adder [viper] by the path..." (Gen 49:17). Thus the emblem traditionally associated with Dan is an "adder biting horses heels" (Thomas Fuller, Pisgah Sight of Palestine). However Aben Ezra, a learned Jewish scholar of the 1600's said that the emblem of Dan was an "eagle with a dragon in its claws''' (Dr. Mortz Lewin, Waren die Zehn Stamme Israels zu suchen?, p.48; Epshtein, Abraham, Eldad Ha Dani-2).


The Danites Leave Greece for Ireland

"The Danites ruled about two centuries until the arrival of the Milesians, which took place, 1000 years before the Christian era.' Thus the date of the arrival of the FIRST COLONY OF DANAANS WOULD BE 1200 B.C., or 85 years after Deborah and Barak's victory, when we are told Dan had ships...The early connection with Greece, Phoenician and Egypt is constantly alluded throughout the Chronicles [of Ireland] and records of the Irish Dannans" (Dan Pioneer of Israel, pp.30-31, emphasis added). This first batch of Danites that went to Ireland were called the "Tuatha de Danaan." The word tuath simply means “tribe”—“Tuath... Irish history... A‘TRIBE’ or ‘people’ in Ireland” (New English Dictionary on Historical Principles, vol. 10, pt. 1, p. 441).

The Milesians were a group of people who: "In old manuscripts of Ireland, the Milesians and the Danaans were of the same race. They came in batches from Greece and Phoenicia" (Dan, The Pioneer of Israel, J.C. Gawler, p.30). The was the second group of Danites to migrate from Greece to Ireland. It was this group of Danaans who migrated to Ireland via Spain and Greece with the Royal family of David, and set up the throne of David at Tara in the days of Jeremiah (read our booklet The Throne of David in Prophecy).

The Third Group of Danites

Now the remaining Danites migrated North 30 miles away from Tyre. These Danites that migrated North to Laish. There they named the city "Dan." (Judges 18:29).

Moses had prophesied, “Dan is a lion’s whelp; he shall leap from Bashan” (Deut. 33:22). Bashan was the location of the inland Danites! Therefore, a great many of them must have “leapt” from inland Palestine—as probably the majority would later, at the time of the Assyrian invasions of Israel.

In the invasions of Israel by the Assyrians, they took, "In the days of Pekah king of Israel came Tiglath-pileser king of Assyria, and took Ijon, and Abel-beth-maachah, and Janoah, and Kedesh, and Hazor, and Gilead, and Galilee, all the land of Naphtali, and carried them captive to Assyria." (2 Kings 15:29). This is the same list of cities found in 1 Kings 15:20: "So Ben-hadad hearkened unto king Asa, and sent the captains of the hosts which he had against the cities of Israel, and smote Ijon, and Dan, and Abel-beth-maachah, and all Cinneroth, with all the land of Naphtali." Notice that Dan is not mentioned during the time of the Assyrian invasion. Did they "leap" out of Palestine to avoid the invasion altogether? Historical evidence suggests that the inland Danites, "migrated northward into the Black Sea region..." (Collins, LTTF, p.412). One can understand the situation of the Danites. With many of their people gone to Greece and Ireland, the tribe must of been depleted. With the soon coming invasion of Assyrians, they must of thought that if we don't get out of the land, there will be none of us left, therefore avoided (leaped) out of the land escaping the invasion altogether.

In the Black Sea region, it's interesting, keeping with the tradition of naming places names after Dan their father. The rivers emptying into the Black Sea region used to be named Ister, Tyras, the Borysthenes and Tanais. After they arrived there, the names of the rivers were changed to Danube, the Dnestr, and the Don (Collier's Encyclopedia vol.17 p.434).

Dan -- A Serpent's Trail

Jacob prophesied that Dan would be a "Serpent by the way, an adder by the path," (Gen 9:16-17) meaning that he would leave a trail wherever he would go. When the Danites migrated to Ireland, they left a trail of names throughout Europe. In Hebrew there are no vowels, so the name Dan is written DN, or its Hebrew equivalent. Thus words like Dan, Din, Don, Dun, Den, or Dn, correspond to the name of Dan.

Professor Totten declares:  "There is no grander theme upon the scrolls of history than the story of this struggle of the Anglo-Saxons westward. The very streams of Europe mark their resting places, and in the root of nearly all their ancient names (Dan, or Don) recall the sacred stream Jordan river of rest-- from whose whose hands, so far away, as exiles, they set out. It was either the little colony of Dan, obeying its tribal proclivity for naming everything it captured (Jud.18:1-29) after their father, or else the mere survival of a word and custom; but, none the less, it serves to TRACE these wanderers LIKE A TRAIL. Hence the Dan-ube, the Dan-ieper, the Dan-iester, the Dan-au, the Daci and Davi, the Dan, the Don, the U-Don, the Eri-don, and the THOUSAND OTHER Dans and Dons of ancient and early geography, down to the Danes in Dan-emerke, or 'Dan's last resting place'" (quoted in Allen, Judah's Sceptre and Joseph's Birthright, p.263-64).

Denmark, the name of the modern country in Europe north of Germany, means, literally, "Dan's mark." It's people are called "Danes." In fact, because at one time Denmark ruled all the surrounding region, the whole region took its name from them the ScanDINavian peninsula! Clearly, here are remnants of the people of DAN, who migrated westward overland from the Caucasus to their present location in northern Europe! “According to late Danish tradition... Jutland [the mainland of Denmark] was acquired by DAN, the... ancestor of the DANES” from whom their name derives (“Denmark,” Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th ed., vol.8). The Danes claim the descend from "Dan the Great" meaning Dan of Israel (Saxo Grammaticus; "The First Nine Books of Saxo Grammaticus of the Danish History).

The third batch of Danites left a trail to their final homeland Denmark. As you can see the Serpent's head (Denmark) is the final destination of this tribe.

In Ireland, today, we find their customary evidence -- their place names -- in abundance. Such names as Dans-Lough, Dan-Sower, Dan-Monism, Dun-dalke, Dun-drum, Don-egal Bay, Don-egal City, Dun-glow and Lon-don-derry, as well as Din-gle, Dun-garven and Duns-more, which means "MORE DANS." It should be plain that the ancient Danites settled in Ireland, and most of them dwell in that land, today (It is certainly no coincidence that the Irish Gaelic word Dun or Dunn means “Judge,” just as Dan does in Hebrew!).

Prophecy Fulfilled

Jacob said that Dan is a serpent that, "...biteth the horse heels, so that his rider shall fall backward." (Gen 49:17). Here the Danites are pictured in the "last days" (v.1), as under the heel biting the horse. The Irish were governed by the British (the rider) until the early 1920's. The Irish won their independence via a terrorist campaign against the British representatives (i.e. "nipping at the heels" ) of the British government. The Bible describes the manner in which the Irish obtained their independence. This continues today with the IRA trying to overthrow British rule in Northern Ireland. Its not open warfare, but "nipping at the heels" via terrorist acts.

Jacob also says that "Dan shall judge his people, as one of the tribes of Israel" (Gen 49:16). As quoted from the Pulpit Commentary earlier, Dan would be "...performing the office of an administrator among the People not of his own tribe merely, but also of all Israel" (emphasis added). After the early example of Charles Lynch, Irish immigrants quickly found employment in the police departments, fire departments and other public services of major cities, largely in the North East and around the Great Lakes. By 1855, according to New York Police Commissioner George W. Matsell (1811–1877), himself the son of Irish immigrants, almost 17 percent of the police department's officers were Irish-born (compared to 28.2 percent of the city) in a report to the Board of Alderman; of the NYPD's 1,149 men, Irish-born officers made up 304 of 431 foreign-born policemen. In the 1860s more than half of those arrested in New York City were Irish born or of Irish descent but nearly half of the City's law enforcement officers were also Irish. By the turn of the 20th century, five out of six NYPD officers were Irish born or of Irish descent. As late as the 1960s, even after minority hiring efforts, 42% of the NYPD were Irish Americans. Up to the 20th and early 21st century, Irish Catholics continue to be prominent in the law enforcement community, especially in the Northeastern United States. The Emerald Society, an Irish American fraternal organization, was founded in 1953 by the NYPD. When the Boston chapter of the Emerald Society formed in 1973 half of the city's police officers became members.

The Future

The 144,000 of the tribes of Israel that will stand on Mt. Zion with Christ when he comes does not include Dan. (Rev 7 & 14). Why? Some blame it on an ancient scribal error in copying an original document sometime in the far distant past and this error was copied from then until the present. Others say Dan received their inheritance before all the other tribes therefore not listed.

These explanations do not satisfy. Revelation 7:4 says that, "all the tribes of the children of Israel." are listed as the  144,000. So why does it say Manasses  instead of Dan? The solution is simple. Dan is split into two nations, Ireland and Denmark. Ireland is Catholic, 80% of the Danes are Lutheran (Church membership 2013 3.1.2013 Kyrkans tidning (Danish); Statistics Denmark

Today, the tribe of Dan in Ireland is still given into idolatry following the traditions of  their ancestors. They are as a nation, an integral part of the false mystery system God labels as “MYSTERY,  BABYLON THE GREAT” in Revelation 17:5. This is a great false church, a worldly church, which has persecuted God's true servants down through the ages (Verse 6).

Notice in Revelation 2:20, this same false church is likened to that wicked “woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a  prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols.” God says He will smite her children with death because they have known the “depths of Satan” (Verses 23-24).

Jezebel’s children, then, are those who have been taught at an early age her abominable idolatries and filthiness (Rev. 2:20) and are deep in her doctrine (Verse 24). This woman Jezebel symbolizes the Roman Catholic Church. Most Danites (Irish) are members of this false church from birth, attending her schools, festivals and idolatrous religious worship services. This is the same false church God commands His people to “come out of” so they will not receive of the plagues He is going to bring on those who worship her (Rev. 18 :4). Since the nation of Ireland, the modern Danites, are in the “depths of Satan” and do not know God’s true way, probably nothing less than the complete destruction of this false Roman church, combined with the presence and power of Christ’s rule on this earth, will finally bring them to repentance. Dan says to God: “I have waited for thy salvation, O Lord” (Gen. 49:l6).

It is Denmark that will be part of the 144,000. How can we know? The clue is in the name "Manasses." Back in Judges the 18th chapter the inland Danites who moved to Denmark, when they migrated to Laish and named it Dan after their father. Afterward the children of Dan "...set up the graven image: and Jonathan, the son of Gershom, the son of Manasseh, he and his sons were priests to the tribe of Dan until the day of the captivity of the land." (v.30). The Septuagint has "Manasses" just like the book of Revelation. (Barnes Notes). God is telling us that it is Denmark and not Ireland that will have 12,000 that will rule with Christ on Mt. Zion. The Irish will have to go through the plagues, watch the Catholic church be destroyed (Rev  18), and Jesus himself to help them come out of idolatry that they have been steeped into for centuries.

The "day of Captivity" its speaking of is not the Assyrian captivity but, "Most of the commentators suppose the allusion to be to the Assyrian captivity, or primarily to the carrying away by Tiglath-Pileser of the northern tribes of Israel, viz., the population of Gilead, Galilee, and the tribe of Naphtali, in the midst of which Laish-Dan was situated (2Ki_15:29). But the statement in Jdg_18:31, 'And they set them up Micah's graven image, which he made, all the time that the house of God was in Shiloh,' is by no means reconcilable with such a conclusion. We find the house of God, i.e., the Mosaic tabernacle, which the congregation had erected at Shiloh in the days of Joshua (Jos_18:1), still standing there in the time of Eli and Samuel (1Sa_1:3., Jdg_3:21; Jdg_4:3); but in the time of Saul it was at Nob (1Sa_21:1-15), and during the reign of David at Gibeon (1Ch_16:39; 1Ch_21:29). Consequently 'the house of God' only stood in Shiloh till the reign of Saul, and was never taken there again. If therefore Micah's image, which the Danites set up in Dan, remained there as long as the house of God was at Shiloh, Jonathan's sons can only have been there till Saul's time at the longest, and certainly cannot have been priests at this sanctuary in Dan till the time of the Assyrian captivity.(Note: The impossibility of reconciling the statement as to time in Jdg_18:31 with the idea that 'the captivity of the land' refers to the Assyrian captivity, is admitted even by Bleek (Einl. p. 349), who adopts Houbigant's conjecture, viz., הָאָרֹון גְּלֹות, 'the carrying away of the ark.')"  (K&D Commentary). Some of the best commentators, as Kimchi among the Jews, and many moderns, think it refers to the taking captive of the ark by the Philistines in the days of Eli, because this is the time indicated in the next verse by the mention of the house of God in Shiloh. The ark of God never returned to Shiloh after it was taken thence (1Sa_4:3, 1Sa_4:4) and captured by the Philistines (ibid. ver. 11).